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Update From Apple Concerning Future Upgrades to Final Cut Pro X

Danny Greer

Apple has opened up to some of it’s biggest Final Cut Pro users about the future of the application.  A few positive FCPX updates coming soon and a few major feature requests seem to be gone for good.

In response to all the hubbub about the new Final Cut Pro X during the last few weeks, today Apple took up FCPX issues with several of it’s enterprise users at a briefing in London.  Post production engineer Sam Johnson was in attendance and posted a rundown of the meeting on his Twitter account.  Here’s Sam’s quick rundown of what we know now:

  • FCP XML in and out of Final Cut Pro X is coming soon from a 3rd party supporter.
  • There will never be any support for bringing earlier FCP projects into Final Cut Pro X
  • The ability to buy licenses for Final Cut Pro 7 for enterprise use will be coming soon (possibly within the next few weeks)
  • Final Cut Pro X EDL import and export will be coming soon.
  • AJA will soon be releasing plugins for tape based capture and layoff.  You will be able to capture directly into FCPX bins.
  • XSan support FCPX will be coming within a few weeks.
  • Broadcast video output support from Blackmagic and AJA will be coming soon.
  • Additional codec support coming from 3rd parties soon.
  • Customizable timecode for project sequences for master exports coming soon.

Final Cut Pro editor and plugin creator Peter Wiggins was also at the event. He has stated a few additional FCPX updates from the briefing:

  • Color and other pro video apps (DVD Studio Pro, Soundtrack) have indeed been killed off.
  • Multicam will be a free upgrade (coming soon I hope).
  • Expect a range of digital asset management solutions for FCPX to come soon.
  • Compressor works in 64 bit only if the codec supports it.  Will back down to 32 bit when using 32 bit codecs.

Read Peter’s full report from the briefing here.

This Apple briefing has gives us some insight into the future of the application and let’s us know that they may in fact be listening.  Many of the missing features we mentioned on FCPX launch day may indeed surface in this application (based off what we know now).  However, the ability to import FCP version 6/7 projects  — perhaps the most common request of all — is unlikely to appear in future FCPX versions.

Notwithstanding, I personally think if Apple begins to integrate the above features into FCPX, as they say they are going to do, I’m willing to hold off making a switch.  The ball’s now in Apple’s court to keep me (and all other professional editors) loyal users.